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What to Expect from Crude Oil Prices in 4Q17

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Part 6
What to Expect from Crude Oil Prices in 4Q17 PART 6 OF 6

US Crude Oil Rig Count Hit a 2-Week Low

Rig count

The weekly US crude oil rig count report was released on October 6, 2017, by oil equipment services company Baker Hughes (BHI). Rigs fell by two to 748 between September 29, 2017, and October 6, 2017. The rigs are at the lowest level since September 22, 2017. However, the oil rig count increased 75% from the same period in 2016. The rigs rose due to higher crude oil (UCO) (UWT) prices in 2016.

US Crude Oil Rig Count Hit a 2-Week Low

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Rigs are at an all-time high and low 

US oil rigs hit an all-time high of 1,609 in October 2014. In contrast, the rigs hit 316 in May 2016—the lowest level since the 1940s. West Texas Intermediate prices are near a four-week low. Lower oil prices have a negative impact on drilling activity and oil production. It impacts drillers (IEZ) (XES) like Atwood Oceanics (ATW), Transocean (RIG), and Diamond Offshore (DO).

International oil rigs

Baker Hughes estimates that international oil rigs fell by 15 to 700 in September 2017—compared to August 2017. Crude oil rigs fell 2.1% month-over-month but rose by 31 rigs or 4.5% from the same period in 2016. Oil rigs are at a seven-month low.

Impact 

US crude oil rigs are at a two-week low. The rigs follow crude oil prices with a lag. The rigs could rise if oil prices trade higher. If the rigs rise, it could increase US production. As a result, it would have a negative impact on oil (USL) (SCO) prices.

For some crude oil price forecasts, read Crude Oil Price Forecasts: Downgraded for the Fifth Month.

Read Crude Oil Has Risen since June: Time to Short Crude Oil Futures? for more on crude oil.

Read An Opportunity in Natural Gas? for natural gas updates.

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